Orlando Pride (3-4-1, 10 points) at Chicago Red Stars (1-6-1, 4 points)
When: Saturday, 8:00 p.m.
Where: SeatGeek Stadium, Bridgeview, Ill.
The Pride are heading back on the road this week, taking on the Red Stars up in Bridgeview. Here's six things to watch for on Saturday night:
Bringing the Strom
Defender Kylie Strom notched her first goal of the season and the second as a member of the Pride in Saturday’s match against the Washington Spirit. Strom netted the eventual game-winner following a corner kick from Marta, heading the ball straight into the back of the net. The Pride defender recorded her first assist of the season on Messiah Bright’s game-winner against Racing Louisville earlier this month, and has earned the start in all eight matches of the 2023 NWSL regular season, playing every minute of the season for the Pride thus far.
Sights and Sounds | A look back at a spirited Pride victory over league-leading Washington
Keeping the Streak
The Pride head into Saturday’s match against the Chicago Red Stars undefeated in four-consecutive regular season matches, seeking to add a fifth to their record. The Pride’s unbeaten streak started in their match against the San Diego Wave at Snapdragon Stadium on April 29, where the Pride recorded a 3-1 win. Since then, the side has taken victories over Racing Louisville and the Washington Spirit, along with a scoreless draw at Gotham. The Pride are three matches away from matching last year’s mark of seven matches unbeaten at the start of Head Coach Seb Hines tenure, with their longest unbeaten run spanning 10 matches in the regular season from the end of 2017 to the start of 2018.
The Pride’s most recent win against Washington Spirit marked the end of the Spirit’s nine-match unbeaten streak to start the 2023 campaign, with the Spirit serving as the last NWSL team to drop a result on the year. The Pride also handed the San Diego Wave their first loss at home earlier this season after previously going undefeated in three matches at Snapdragon Stadium.
Marta scored her first goal of the 2023 season over the weekend and her first since October 2021 after missing the 2022 campaign due to injury. The six-time FIFA World Player of the Year converted from the penalty spot after teammate Adriana had been taken down in the box. Later in the match, the Brazilian international tallied her first assist of the season, whipping in the corner that found the head of Kylie Strom for the game-winner.
Seb Hines | We knew what we were capable of doing
Love for the Left Side
Two players that have been quietly providing consistency for the Pride play on the left, in defender Kylie Strom and forward Adriana. Through the first eight matches of the season, Strom ranks first in the league in tackles (29), defensive third tackles (17) and dribblers tackled (22), as well as third overall in big chances created (3), crosses into the penalty area (5) and duels (69). Adriana, a first-year player with Orlando, sits first overall in chances created (21), passes that led to shots (21) and carries into the penalty area (31), and is second in shot creating actions (37), total distance traveled (1,905 yards) and fouls drawn that lead to shot (5).
Megan Montefusco | We're doing all those little things
Facing the Red Stars
The Pride have taken four victories from their last six visits to SeatGeek Stadium, with each win seeing the side score two goals or more. Since 2018, the Pride hold a +6 goal-differential when traveling to face the Red Stars as they are looking to make it five wins on the road against Saturday’s opposition throughout Club history while also extending their current unbeaten run to five matches.
- Haley McCutcheon is six appearances away from 100 in the regular season across her NWSL career.
- Marta is nine appearances from across 100 in her NWSL career, all with the Pride.
- With an appearance on Saturday, Marta will tie both Ashlyn Harris and Toni Pressley for most regular season appearances in Club history (81).
- Megan Montefusco is seven appearances away from 175 across all NWSL competitions.